Tuesday, July 14, 2015

Going From Crawly to Creepy in Stroudsburg

Saturday July 11th proved to be an adventurous day as The Pocono Arts District presented a variety of activities throughout the town of Stroudsburg, PA for its monthly Art Walk. These events usually take place on the first Saturday of the month but, as July's first Saturday correlated with the Independence Day Holiday, it was rescheduled for the 11th. This change didn't make the day any less festive for the artists and art lovers who participated in the day long endeavor as many events to enhance and satisfy the masses took place.

My adventures began at the Farmers Market which was held at the town's Courthouse Square. The market offers fresh produce along with other items such as breads and wine to the delight of all health conscious customers who visit. The market also includes a Plein Air Painting session led by Jill Swersie www.jillswersie.com of The Pocono Arts District. Artists of all levels of experience are invited to attend. The Monroe Farmers Market takes place every Saturday from 8am until Noon. You can learn more about them by exploring their Facebook Page at www.facebook.com/monroefarmersmkt?fref=ts or their Website at www.monroefarmersmarket.com.

As the vendors in the Farmers Market were closing up shop, I moved myself to the front of the Cafe Duet www.facebook.com/cafeduetstbg?fref=ts to meet with the artists who were to participate in The 8th Stroudsburg, PA Sketch Crawl. After a series of joyful greetings, sketch pads and pencils were pulled out so the artists could begin to draw. A variety of images met the paper as the skilled movement of the pencils reflected the talents of its holder. I endeavored to stretch my creative abilities by joining the sketchers upon which I proved to be a good photographer. After a time, the company moved toward the Ramsey Elementary School to take up residence there in order to capture more incredible images. When it was time to leave that location, the group traveled to their final destination which was the Origins Gallery.

The heat of the day crated a desire to move inside of the air conditioned venue and, after gaining permission, we found our places upon the comfortable chairs that were available and continued drawing. It was at this location that the company was joined by others who shared their talents which enhanced the flavor of the gathering. The Stroudsburg, PA Sketch Crawl meets every other Saturday offering artists an opportunity to travel around the town in order to sketch items unique at each of the three selected locations that is visited during a 40 minute time period. All artists of any level of experience are invited and welcomed to participate. You can learn more about The Stroudsburg, PA Sketch Crawl by exploring their Facebook Page at www.facebook.com/StroudsburgSketchCrawl?fref=ts or their Website at www.stroudsburgsketchcrawl.tumblr.com.

The next stop of my Art Walk adventure was one I didn't have to walk to. Since the final location of The Stroudsburg, PA Sketch Crawl was the Origins Gallery, I simply stayed there as they began their Open House event. A great number of art related activities were offered as well as some good food and conversation. It was a joy to relax while chatting with artists who lent their talents to create something wonderful either alone or in collaboration with another. There were also a number of pieces upon the gallery's wall from their Papers, Prints and Frames exhibition which concluded on Sunday July 12th. Their next exhibition is titled, “Fantasies and Imaginings.” Artists are invited to submit their work on July 16th and 17th. The Artists' Reception will take place on Saturday July 18th beginning at 6pm with the work remaining on display until August 2nd. You can learn more about The Origins Gallery by exploring their Facebook Page at www.facebook.com/OriginsGalleryStroudsburg?fref=ts or their Website at www.originsgallery.org.

It was after a time at The Origins Gallery did I travel to The SOHO in the Burg Gallery to visit any and all individuals who were there. I was greeted with the ever present effervescence of the establishment's owner, Andrea Robbins Rimberg. She eagerly showed me a sculpture she was working on of Jacob Stroud who was the founder of Stroudsburg, PA. The statue was being created as part of a borough wide celebration marking its 200th year in existence. The SOHO in the Burg Gallery in Stroudsburg, PA is currently showing their Eye Candy exhibition and will continue to do so until July 30th. Their next exhibition will be conjunction with The Local Flair Magazine's August/September Food Issue and will be titled, “Art รก la Carte.” The Artists' Reception is scheduled for Saturday August 8th. You can learn more about The SOHO in the BURG Gallery by exploring their Facebook Page at www.facebook.com/sohointheburg or their Website at www.sohointheburg.com.

After I left The SOHO in the BURG Gallery, I wandered over to the first of two Artists' Receptions of the day. The PoconoArts Cultural Center showcased the work of a number of artists for their Landscape Exhibition which was held in the Center's ARTSPACE Gallery. The walls of the gallery also presented the work of Joni Oye Benintende while the Center's studio gallery displayed its ongoing exhibit featuring the work of the late Morris Berman. The variety of the work created a landscape upon the wall transcended the wonderments of the images each piece depicted. A modest but enthusiastic gathering of art lovers filled the venue and shared the discoveries they encountered while exploring the terrain of each piece through their excited conversations. Awards were given to those artists who demonstrated exceptional skill in capturing the essence of their depictions. The awards included Honorable Mentions going to Joyce Love for her work titled, “Lakeside” and to Jill Swersie for her work titled, “A Winter Walk.” The 3rd place prize went to Eric Goins for his piece titled, “Blossom Art,” the 2nd place prize went to Jason Scott Williamson for his piece titled, “Mountain View,” and the 1st place prize went to Pamela Mading for her work titled, “Birches.” The judge for the event was Patti Tinsman-Schaffer.

The PoconoArts Community Cultural Center is part of The PoconoArts Council which is an organization designed to build the communities in which it serves artistically and culturally by providing leadership, service, and education. It does so by offering avenues for artists to display their work through the center and other galleries, educational opportunities for those who would like to explore and/or enhance their creative natures, and encouragement to those who seek to express and/or support the arts. The Landscape Exhibition will continue to be on display until July 27th. Their next exhibition will be their Photography Exhibition. Artists are invited to submit their work on Monday July 27th. The Artists' Reception is scheduled for Friday July 31st beginning at 5pm with the work continuing to be on display until August 31st. You’ll be able to learn more about The PoconoArts Community Cultural Center and all it has to offer the creative community by exploring The PoconoArts Council Facebook Page at www.facebook.com/poconoartscouncil or their Website at www.poconoarts.org.

The second of the two Artists' Reception was held at The Sherman Theater's Living Room Gallery. Their Creepy Crawly Exhibition featured the work of Steve Truglio and Melissa Benzinger of Dancing Vulture Designs www.facebook.com/dancingvulturedesigns. The gallery also presented work created by local artists whose interpretations of the exhibit's theme was as varied as their creative approach. A very small number of art lovers attended the reception until a presentation given by Petfection Exotic Pet Specialists www.facebook.com/pages/Petfection-Exotic-Pet-Specialist/287717128067304?fref=ts began. The talk included a vast array of snakes, spiders, lizards, and other creepy crawly things. A mixture of ewwwed delights and terrors filled the room as each creature was introduced and handed to members of the gathering. It was fun to watch.

The Sherman Theater's Living Room is located in Stroudsburg, PA. The Creepy Crawly Exhibition continues to be on display until August 10th. Their next exhibition is yet to be announced. In addition to the art exhibitions, the gallery holds a number of concerts and a weekly Open Mic Series www.facebook.com/OpenMicAtTheLivingRoom?fref=ts that occurs every Sunday evening beginning at 6pm. You can learn more about The Sherman's Theater Living Room and how it serves the community by exploring their Facebook Page at www.facebook.com/shermanlivingroom?fref=ts.

The July 11th Art Walk proved to be an enjoyable one filled with good art and conversation. I, personally, found it exhilarating to stretch myself by exploring the craft of sketching and learned a few things about some creatures whom I'm still not sure I want to stop avoiding. It was a fun day that was presented by The Pocono Arts District which is comprised of a small group of artists and art lovers who has a desire to enhance the local artistic community. The Pocono Arts District is always searching for new ideas and you can share them through their Facebook Page at www.facebook.com/ThePoconoArtsDistrict.

The next Art Walk will take place on Saturday August 1st. I hope to see you there. In the meantime, you'll find more Photographs taken during the July Art Walk in The Going From Crawly to Creepy in Stroudsburg Gallery at www.facebook.com/media/set/?set=a.10154027479673761.1073741868.91146283760&type=3.

Photography by Paparazzi Paul.

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